March 2nd and children everywhere are running into classrooms dressed as their favourite characters. Technically this should be a character from a book but does it really matter if a child wants to dress up as Spider Man or Elsa?
World Book Day is an annual event to celebrate books, authors, illustrators and reading. Children all over the UK and Ireland are given a voucher to put towards their next book to encourage this. The event has been running for over 20 years and costumes can now be bought in your local supermarket to save parents the pressure of running something up on the sewing machine in the weeks / days / hours before.
But is World Book Day still a celebration of all things books? Or has it become just another way for parents to feel pressurised for their child to have the best costume in the playground and the most likes on Facebook? I'm beginning to wonder if we've forgotten the meaning is all about books..
My social media feed has been full of World Book Day this week, ranging from parents proudly posting their amazing home made efforts to cries for reassurance that its ok for a child to go to school in a shop bought costume designed for the opposite gender. Most little ones I've seen today have chosen to go for Elsa over Anne Frank but every child in my sons classroom this morning looked delightfully happy and proud in their costumes.
So does it really matter if the costume is book or film? Is it just important that we encourage children to use their imagination and celebrate the art of story telling - whatever form that takes. As schools do you feel in danger of pressurising the children too much?
What have your classrooms looked like today? We'd love to see some pictures and we promise to post a selection in next weeks newsletter.